Plastic Bottle Fly / Mosquito traps /Slug traps

Overview: Flies can cause the spread of diseases. Mosquitos carry Malaria and Dengue Fever. You can create simple fly traps in seconds, but then spend a lifetime optimising the design

Task: You are to create a fly or mosquito trap out of a plastic bottle or other rubbish. You then need to take steps to optimise the design to make it as effective as possible.

Equipment Provided: Plastic Bottles, plastic bags, scissors

Health and Safety: You must carry out your own risk assessment (Rubbish Science accept no liability)

Take care using cutting instruments.

Always wash your hands after dealing with flies and waste. Consider how infections might spread

Things you might need to know / Questions you might ask:

  • What are flies attracted to / what do they eat?
  • What damage / diseases do they cause?
  • Are different species more or less dangerous? (which ones should you target?
  • What is their lifecycle? Can you attract them to lay eggs?
  • What colour are they attracted to? (if any)
  • How might you produce a trap that is easy for flies to get into , but hard to get out of?
  • Where might be the best place to site the trap? Note: You don’t want to attract them in places where there is food or they can spread disease.
  • Are there any environmental implications to removing flies?

Prototyping: What designs might work? Create some quickly and test their effectiveness. Note: If possible record what happens as the flies approach your trap/s. Can they get in/out easily?

Modifications:How might you modify your designs based on what your preliminary results look like? What have others done and what can you learn from them?

Prediction: What do you think will happen and why?

Do it: Create a table of results or some way of recording how many flies you caught.

What happened?: Was your trap effective?

Tell Someone: Explain what you did and why you felt your trap was effective. Listen to others do they have any good ideas?

What did you learn? What do you know now that you didn’t know before you started this investigation?

Extension/Modify/Do it again: How could you extend this to catch more flies?

Possible Models – How can you optimise the design?

  Note: This activity is ideal to do as a CREST Award